Al Qaeda, Boko Haram, Al Shabaab: Islamists Tighten Grip on Africa

Al Shabaab militants parade new recruits after arriving in Mogadishufrom their training camp south of the capital in this October 21, 2010 file photo. The United States has carried out an air strike in Somalia, killing more than 150 fighters with the al Qaeda-linked Islamist... REUTERS/FEISAL OMAR/FILES
Boko Haram – one of 34 ISIS affiliates and among the world’s deadliest terror groups – in 2014 notoriously kidnapped more than 200 school girls in Chibok, Nigeria. The administration responded with a memorable Twitter campaign featuring First Lady Michelle Obama holding a placard with the hashtag #BringBackOurGirls. Somebody should have mentioned that her husband is the leader of the free world and as such has access to resources other than social media. It’s too bad nobody did. Those girls are still missing, along with thousands of other innocent men, women and children since then. Radical Islamist violence is increasing exponentially in lethality and geography in Africa and shows no signs of slowing, according to a new statistical analysis of recent trends in Islamist terror by the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT). With the notable exception of Algeria, the continent barely registered on the map of significant Islamist terror in 2001. Today, half of the 18 countries with the highest level of activity in the world are in Africa, with Boko Haram, al-Shabaab and al-Qaida in the Lands of the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) leading the killings. Boko Haram by itself has destroyed large areas in Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger. It first appeared on the scene in 2009, when